UCD has awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws to former Labour Court chair Kevin Duffy.
The award honours outstanding leaders in Irish society.
Kevin Duffy began his career as a bricklayer after leaving school aged 15. An official of the Bricklayers' Union for 15 years, the Dubliner was appointed general secretary to the then 200-year-old trade union.
In 1987, he joined the Irish Congress of Trade Unions as assistant general secretary in charge of industrial relations.
He was appointed deputy chairman of the Labour Court in 1997 and, given the court’s increased focus on legal arguments, he decided to qualify as a barrister.
Mr Duffy was called to the Bar in 2003, having had no formal education since his teens. Subsequently, he assumed the role as chairman of the Labour Court and held the position for the next 13 years.
Following his retirement, he was chosen by the Government to chair both the commission examining water charges and the Public Service Pay Commission.
“Without fear of contradiction, I can say that [Kevin] has done Ireland extraordinary service,” said associate professor Anthony Kerr (UCD Sutherland School of Law at the conferring ceremony last week.